HEL Delinquencies Tick Up and Charge-Offs Remain Elevated

Delinquency rates on second mortgages and home equity lines of credit have been rising this year, according to a new report by the American Bankers Association, despite the overall improvement in other consumer credits.

ABA reported Thursday that the percentage of HELOCs 30 days or more past due hit 1.93% in the third quarter, up 34 bps from a year ago.

The delinquency rate on closed-end second mortgages hit 4.2% in the third quarter, up 20 bps from the first quarter.

ABA chief economist James Chessen noted the recent improvement in the housing market has not impacted the performance of home equity loans yet.

“While there are strong signs that the housing market has turned a corner, it will take several quarters before delinquency numbers begin to reflect those trends,” Chessen said.

Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. data also show delinquencies on second liens at banks and thrifts ticked up in the third quarter and charge-offs remain at high levels.

Net charge-offs on HELOCs totaled $4.2 billion in third quarter, up from $3.1 billion a year ago.

Net charge-offs on closed-end second mortgages totaled $3.7 billion in the third quarter, compared to $4.1 billion in the third quarter of 2011.

The net charge-off rate on HELOCs was 2.9% and 0.83% on second mortgages.